Tags: Specter | unions | card | check

Sen. Specter Promises To Satisfy Unions On Card-Check

Monday, 08 Jun 2009 05:16 PM

By David A. Patten

Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, the much-maligned Republican who switched parties April 28th to become a Democrat, is promising union workers that they will "be satisfied" with how he votes on the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA).

Sporadic hecklers at a union-sponsored rally in downtown Pittsburgh interrupted Specter on Saturday, saying they wouldn't support him unless he votes for EFCA, commonly known as "card-check."

As a Republican, Specter insisted he would oppose card-check. Since switching parties, however, he's wavered.

About 200 workers attended the rally, many waving signs that stated: "Free Choice Act – It's About Workers' Rights," and "Senator: We are all counting on you – Support the Employee Free Choice Act."

EFCA would eliminate the current requirement that a vote to unionize must come via secret ballot. Making the ballot public, opponents contend, would open the door to union intimidation. While union leaders dispute that, supporters and opponents agree that card-check would make it easier to unionize workers.

Specter acknowledged that his hopes of winning re-election depend on union support.

"I feel the pressure, and I feel the heat, and I know it," Specter said.

Specter reminded the workers that he was one of only three GOP senators to vote for President Obama's $787 billion stimulus package.

"I had a hell of a lot of heat and a hell of a lot of pressure from the Republican party… " he added, saying that he was "largely responsible" for the stimulus bill's passage.

He later reiterated, "The stimulus package … was passed because of my vote, my intervention."

Specter's speech was briefly interrupted when a worker began to shout from the crowd: "You want my vote, we want yours."

"I understand your job's on the line," Specter said.

"No, your job's on the line," the worker interrupted.

"I understand that," Specter acknowledged. Then he promised: "I believe you will be satisfied with my vote on this issue. And if you're not, I recognize your right in a free society, to cast your vote as you choose. But I think you will be satisfied with my vote on this issue about union organizing …. "

Leading Democrats expressed skepticism that they had the votes they needed to get the measure through the Senate – but Specter's support could change that.

Sen. Tom Harken, D-Iowa, the bill's Senate sponsor, recently said that Specter is "willing to negotiate" on card-check. Senators are trying to modify the proposal to make it more palatable.

U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak, D-Pa., and state Rep. Bill Kortz are both expected to challenge Specter in the Democratic primary.

© 2015 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Mali's Islamists Withdraw Cease-Fire Pledge

Friday, 04 Jan 2013 13:06 PM

Tens of thousands of Fatah supporters rallied in the Hamas stronghold of Gaza on Friday for the first time since they we . . .

Fmr. CIA Director Hayden: Iran Nuclear Crisis Gets 'Scarier'

Tuesday, 17 Jul 2012 18:11 PM

 . . .

Join Fmr. CIA Director for Special Iran Briefing, Assess the Danger

Friday, 13 Jul 2012 12:27 PM

 . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved